This recipe holds a very special place in my heart. It is the first recipe I ever had published. It is essentially the recipe that inspired me to become a food blogger and pursue my dreams of creating recipes and writing a cookbook. It is the first cake recipe that I developed and it quickly became famous among my family and friends. People are always requesting it and asking for the recipe.
In October of 2019 I got a text from the owner of a local magazine, The Besst Yet, asking me if I wanted to have one of my recipes featured in their magazine as recipe of the month. Of course I said yes. This issue happened to be the December issue so I knew right away I could share my famous Red Velvet Cake since it’s that perfect Santa red color and would be perfect for people to make for their upcoming Christmas parties.
I remember sitting in my kitchen bawling tears of joy the day the December issue of The Besst Yet magazine was delivered in my mailbox. I sat on the floor and looked at it over and over again, so proud of myself for accomplishing the first goal on a list of many. It may have just been a small local magazine, but to me it was a start. I still remember people sending me messages telling me they made my cake and that it was the best cake they have ever had in their life!
I can’t tell you how many times I have made this cake in sheet cake form for birthday parties, Christmas parties, potlucks, baby blessings, baptisms, bridal showers, baby showers, you name a gathering and I have most likely brought this cake to it. It’s my number one requested dessert from family and friends. Even my cake hating husband requests this cake ALL THE TIME.
I will forever be grateful for this recipe and the memories that it brings. It is what got the ball rolling on my food blogging career and holds a very special place in my heart. Every time I make it, I am reminded of the joy that I felt when I saw the recipe published for the first time. I hope that you will make it and it can create memories within your own home because I guarantee your family will ask for it over and over again.
Tips and Tricks:
- 9 times out of 10, I make this cake in a half sheet pan. If you are new to this recipe, I highly recommend you do the same. Just make sure you spray it really heavily with cooking spray so it doesn’t stick!
- If you want to make it in a 9×13 cake pan, it’ll be a lot thicker (more like the thickness you would get by baking a cake box mix) I find that the cake is less moist this way, so if you can, make the half sheet pan version instead.
- It is very important that your sour cream and eggs are at room temperature before adding them. The texture of your cake will not be as good if you use cold eggs and sour cream.
- Make sure you don’t use too much flour. Use a spoon to scoop the flour into your measuring cup and then level it off. Don’t use your measuring cup to scoop the flour out or you will end up with a dry cake.
Red Velvet Cake
- 3 sticks unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 eggs (room temperature)
- 3/4 cup sour cream (room temperature)
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp red food coloring
- Preheat your oven to 365 degrees F. Spray three 8-inch round cake pans with nonstick spray, line the bottoms with parchment paper and spray again. Set aside. If making a sheet cake, spray a half sheet pan with cooking spray.
- In a medium saucepan, combine the butter and the buttermilk and heat until butter is completely melted. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa. Stir in the sugar. Add in the eggs, sour cream, red food coloring and vanilla. Mix to combine. (Best done in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment but can be done with a hand mixer).
- Pour the hot butter/buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture, a little at a time, stirring constantly. The batter will be very thin.
- Pour batter evenly among the 3 cake pans. Bake in a preheated oven for 26-29 minutes or until a toothpick entered in the center comes out clean. If baking as a sheet cake, bake for 15-19 minutes or until a toothpick entered in the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs.
- Allow to cool in pans for 10 minutes before inverting them onto cooking racks to cool completely. (Ignore this step if making as a sheet cake).
- Allow cake to cool completely. Meanwhile, make the frosting.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth and all lumps have been beaten out.
- With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the sifted powdered sugar, followed by the extracts.
- Turn the mixer to medium speed and beat for about 2-3 minutes, until light and fluffy.
- Frost the cooled cake with the frosting.